Life in the Country

Welcome to the first installment, part 1 of 2, of Life in the Country, a Tale of Kitty Woe — and Rescue.

Once upon a time in the country, a girl moved there from the big city (she’d left to escape the hustle and bustle, the pollution and crowds; mostly she left to escape the cockroaches and the humidity). Anyhoo, being sensitive to chemicals she refused to let Mr. Lyons use them. “Stomp these newfangled country bugs,” she told him. “Don’t spray them. Think of the cats–they consider the creepy crawlies their toys. Besides, we’re a new breed now, country folk. Time to toughen up.”

Which worked for a while. Moths make for good entertainment and the surprisingly colorful grasshoppers were plentiful and big enough to eat (for the cats, that is; even battered in beer and dipped in chocolate, our authoress wouldn’t touch those with a ten-foot fork).

A foot-long centipede in the kitchen? Worth a scream but Zorro found it and Mr. Lyons routed it.

All worn out from centipede patrol.

A wolf spider in the litter box? Sonora found that one and this new country gal routed it all by her lonesome, cussing like a bucked-off bronc rider all the while.

If sweet is as sweet acts then I'm a bucket of cotton candy.

But…then…came…the…mice…

Cute at first (after all, they only possess four legs not eight, and they have fur not scales, no panic-worthy stinger, just a nice loooong tail). Traps in the laundry room worked but not for long. (Long? Ha! Made you think of mouse tales didn’t it?) But with multiple mice come that worst of all vermin: mice poopies. Ugh! That was so not go to work and neither were the traps, so…

Time to bring in reinforcements, aka, Outside Cat. Meet Tucker, mouse (& Quail) Hunter Extraordinaire:

Bad-ass Cat

Next time Tucker will share a tale of woe and rescue. Meanwhile, head butts and purrs to you!

When she’s not hollering for Mr. Lyons to stomp scorpions or wrangling ornery cats, Larissa’s writing. More info on her latest projects can be found at LarissaLyons.com.


About Larissa Lyons

A lover of all things historical and feline, author Larissa Lyons also has a soft spot for hard cowboys. Visit LarissaLyons.com to learn more.
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20 Responses to Life in the Country

  1. I’m a city girl who moved to the country (my parents can’t figure out where they went wrong. They were country folk who moved to the city!) I’ve been battling mice for years! I’ve done everything. My worse mouse story…I shoved my arm into a 40lb bag of dog food to scoop out the dogs’ dinners and a mouse ran up my arm. Yes, I had a heart attack and died on the spot!

  2. Leanne says:

    Great post and ewwwww bugs! Mice Ick but at least they aren’t crawly things :D

    • Larissa Lyons says:

      Yep, my no-freak-out rule is — if they have fur and only four legs, I can handle it. It’s the others that get me squealing.

  3. Oh, Larissa! Guess I’m not cut for the country! I actually don’t mind the mice but a foot long centipede? Wolf spider? What the heck are those!?! We don’t have those hear so I can only shudder thinking about it. Though we’ve never had mice get inside, we had a few in the yard but having 8 cats out there works wonders. Best trap I know of but if they were to get inside I’m praying my indoor cats will know what to do.
    Can’t wait for Part 2 Life in the Country so I can live vicariously through you…I’d better stay put here in the suburbs. Purrs to you!!!

    • Larissa Lyons says:

      Oh yeah, the centipede was a learning experience, I’ll tell you. I had no idea they grew that big outside of a jungle. A wolf spider is smaller than a tarantula but bigger than a lot of typical city spiders and it’s a little bit furry…not exactly fun.

      Indoor cats catching mice — I’m a bit ashamed to admit we’ve had them all declawed (and will choose not to do that in the future) and yes Klingon has caught a mouse or two but he doesn’t know what to do with it. They just get stuck in his voluminous fur (he’s rather fluffy). I’m in the doghouse now where he’s concerned because I didn’t post his picture on today’s post. I’ll catch him next time. :-)

  4. Maria D. says:

    I hate bugs but really really hate mice!!!! Nothing worse – and we get them in the city too….lol…can’t wait to hear Tucker’s story!

  5. Larissa Lyons says:

    Hi Maria! Sorry to hear mice aren’t your thing. :-) Compared to a couple of big honking rats (that could rival my cats in the size department) I actually think mice are kinda cute. Oh yeah, Tucker plans on stealing the show next time. :-) Larissa

  6. Ah, the country. I love it here. But, the ticks are horrendous. And, I have to keep the mouse poison out. The spiders and I have a peace treaty as along as they’re not poisonous. And, the toads come for a visit sometimes. I had one who come into the mudroom, and hang out. When she wanted out again, she’d go to the door.

  7. Larissa Lyons says:

    Big smiles reading your toad story! Did you name her? And yeah, the ticks — they really tick me off! One year when the vet cleaned out Tucker’s ears, she said his number of ticks was a record. Darn, that’s not the kind of thing you want to win. Thanks for dropping by!

    • Well, she got called Toadins, and gosh I miss her. She never acted scared of me, except when I would shoo her into an ice cream carton and put her outside. Sometimes, I worried the pups would get her, and also toads can poison dogs.

      • Larissa Lyons says:

        Awww, Toadins–that’s adorable. But I know what you mean about the concern over poisoning. I hate it when our outside cats go after lizards, not only do I consider them good critters but they really wreck havoc with the cats’ digestive systems. Oh! Your post just made me remember — I had a friend who had a gecko live in her home one winter. He’d “sleep” on a slat of the miniblinds in the living room. After weeks and weeks, he just disappeared one day and I know she was surprised at how hard it hit her. Let’s just think of Toadins hopping around happily wherever she may be…

  8. Eileen says:

    Thank goodness the biggest thing I’ve had to deal with in the suburbs is ants. Years ago in the townhouse I saw a mouse stick his nose out from behind the stove and I jumped so high and screamed so loud that I woke up the kids. It scared me more than anything. The kids didn’t see it that way. They wanted to catch it as a pet. uh..no.

  9. Larissa Lyons says:

    Hi Eileen! I can totally see you waking up the kids on a scream. Mr. Lyons has woken to more than one “scorpion scream” from yours truly. I think the craziest thing I personally know of is a friend of mine who woke up one night with a bat in her bedroom. I kid you not. And she’s not exactly a tough, rustic country chick. I was so impressed to learn that she herded it outside on her own without waking up her husband. I would have been screaming like a banshee. And I like bats.

  10. Nancy S says:

    I hate ants, fire ants are particularly vicious little critters and their bites hurt like, well fire. I have a mouse story from my youth. My brother and I went to the cellar to get the rubber boots Grandma kept there for mucking around in the barn. Oh yes, remember this we were barefoot. My brother puts on one boot and says there’s something wiggly in there. He slips it off and turns it upside down. Out tumbles a bunch of little pink baby mice. Thought Grandpa was going to pop his overalls from laughing so hard at our squealing hopping dance up the stairs.

  11. Larissa Lyons says:

    I’m with your grandfather! You got a huge laugh out of me. Thanks for sharing. :-) Larissa

  12. Randi Alexander says:

    Funny stories, Larissa – and everyone else, too. I had to laugh at your photos, Larissa. Only you would make a cat bed out of an Amazon.com box! *giggle*

    We’re city folk now, so very few home invaders, but when we lived in the country, we had barn cats, and one of them loved June Bugs (A.K.A. May Beatles.) She’d eat dozens of them every night! And we knew this because she’d eat the inside and leave the hard, crusty outside in a pile next to her cat house, like crab leg shells at an all-you-can-eat buffet.

  13. Larissa Lyons says:

    Love the crab-shell imagery!

    Regarding the kitty bed — we call that the Pink Donut. It was supposed to be for the pretty princess Sonora but she won’t go near it. Zorro thinks Real Men (er, cats) Wear Pink though.

  14. Pingback: Dine on This | Wild & Wicked Cowboys

  15. Pingback: Life in the Country – Part 2 | Wild & Wicked Cowboys

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